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Monday, May 21, 2007

Story Time

Kudos to Ronni Bennett for the creation of her new adjunct to her main blog. It's called The Elder Storytelling Place, and it's a fabulous idea. She already has quite a few entries. Good stuff! I'm definitely inspired to make some submissions. Ronni's already accepted one, I'm happy to say, and it should be appearing in the near future.

Whenever I would lapse into storytelling in this blog, I would feel like I was being self-centered and boring. But over time, input from readers, combined with my enjoyment of reading pieces of nostalgia and remeberance put up by other bloggers, caused me to change my mind. I came to realize that stories--at least well articulated ones--were among the most important contributions the older blogger has to offer.

I remember once replying to Dervala's lament that my generation seems to have "disappointingly little to teach us," to which I responded:

"Everything changes so fast now! What the hell do we have
to tell you except our own stories, as honestly as we can. "

I also remember how much I enjoyed my mother's stories despite having an unpleasant, mostly contentious relationship with her. It would be the one situation in which I would feel a bond of warmth with her and a pleasure in being offered something, a sense of receiving something of value, rather than the usual neediness.

Many thanks, Ronni, for this offering. I'm sure it's going to be a hit.


  • I'm so pleased with The Elder Storytelling Place that I'm just bursting. We elders DO have lots of stories to tell - and not just memories, which are important too.

    We bring a different sensibility to life and living than people can when they are young. We're seasoned, have been through a lot - good and bad - seen a lot. We have succeeded and we have failed. And we are at an age where we are trying to make sense of all that has happened in our lives and in the world around us.

    I think Dervala is mistaken about our generation having nothing to teach younger people, but that is undoubtedly only her youth. We are all so arrogant when we are young and we lack subtlety then. Her comment reminds me of Mark Twain's observation about his father...

    By Anonymous Ronni Bennett, at 3:05 AM  

  • Thanks, Ronni, for the comment, but I have to be fair to Dervala by pointing out, first of all, that she's not that young,even though she's of a different generation. (I know, it's hard to grasp sometimes that we're old enough to be the parents of completely mature adults). She's way past the arrogant stage--and way too smart and gracious for such arrogance anyway.

    Unfortunately, my quote is somewhat out of context. It was taken from the middle of a thoughtful, insightful conversation which she initiated, the link to which, sad to say, is broken.

    My apologies to her if I've unwittingly given out the wrong impression with this quote.

    Anyway, I'm glad that you're so pleased with the new site. You should be.

    By Blogger Tom Shugart, at 11:40 AM  

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